In January, my Razorfish colleagues Garrick Schmitt and Malia Supe wrote an insightful blog post, “Brands Do.” They asserted that in the era of consumer participation, brands must spend more time doing things than saying things. Amnesia Razorfish (part of the Razorfish global network) just provided an example of the “Brands Do” ethos.
For three consecutive years, Amnesia Razorfish has won the Adnews interactive agency of the year award, and its embrace of Social Influence Marketing is one of the reasons. Amnesia Razorfish doesn’t tell the world, “We understand social!” The agency shows everyone through its actions.
For instance, on June 30, Iain McDonald, an Amnesia Razorfish founder, conducted an experiment to test the power of Twitter. He publicly challenged Coke and Pepsi to say hello to each other on Twitter and then asked others to retweet his challenge — no small task given the rivalry between the two brands:
But within hours, Coke gave Pepsi a hello on Twitter and even started to follow Pepsi:
Not long thereafter, Pepsi responded in kind:
It’s not the first time rivals have said hello on Twitter. Yahoo famously welcomed Google to Twitter. What’s different about the Coke/Pepsi story is how Iain collaborated with the Twitter universe to inspire the two brands to play nice — a real application of one of today’s hottest buzzwords, crowd-sourcing.
The experiment worked because the idea was irresistible and because Iain leveraged the many influential followers he has built on Twitter. Those followers, in turn, influenced their followers. The story has generated attention in publications like Advertising Age and Brand Republic — a boon for the Amnesia Razorfish brand attributable to Iain’s actions as opposed to anything he overtly said about Amnesia Razorfish. For those of us trying to live the social values, Amnesia Razorfish offers a lesson in building a brand through action.